Golden Suns Grind Out 66-54 Win

A defensive stand over the final four minutes allowed Arkansas Tech University to extend its women’s basketball home winning streak to 20 games with a 66-54 Great American Conference victory over Southeastern Oklahoma State University at Tucker Coliseum in Russellville on Thursday night.

The nationally 15th-ranked Golden Suns (22-3 overall, 20-1 GAC) overcame a 28-27 halftime deficit by opening the second half on a 13-2 run. Arkansas Tech led 40-30 with 4:15 left in the third period and 50-42 at the end of the quarter.

Southeastern Oklahoma State (13-14, 11-10) responded by scoring the first six points of the fourth quarter. The Savage Storm pulled within two points of the lead again at 54-52 on a Taylor Richards 12-foot jumper with 4:08 remaining.

It proved to be the final made field goal of the game for the Savage Storm. Back-to-back baskets by Aujana Dawkins gave the Golden Suns a 58-52 cushion and they made 6-of-6 free throws over the final 55 seconds to put it away.

“We really dug down defensively,” said Arkansas Tech head coach Dave Wilbers. “We did a great job guarding their shooters, and we were able to get some defensive combinations in the game that I liked. We knew it was going to be a tough game. Southeastern is very good. I’m really, really proud of our defense.”

Fatima Adams scored 26 points and grabbed 12 rebounds. It is the 24th double-double of her two-year career with the Golden Suns.

Tech’s Calli White added 17 points. She was 4-of-7 from 3-point range. Dawkins finished with 14 points and eight rebounds.

Kaylie Baxter paced the Savage Storm with 12 points.

The Golden Suns will close out the 2015-16 regular season by hosting East Central University on Saturday, Feb. 27. Tip-off at Tucker Coliseum is set for 1 p.m. Tickets ($5 adults / $3 students and senior citizens) will be available at the door. Those with a valid Arkansas Tech identification card will be admitted free of charge.

Radio station KCJC 102.3 FM and will provide live coverage.